How will I know if getting a dental crown was successful?

A successful dental crown placement is one in which the crown fits over your tooth well and lines up correctly with the rest of your teeth (in dental terms, the alignment of your teeth is also called your “bite”). Sometimes, dentists measure a successful placement as one that lasts a certain number of years without breaking, falling out, or needing adjustments. This type of measure of success is harder to define, because each dentist may have a different idea of how long a crown should last to be considered successful (5 or 10 years or even more). In general, though, you can expect that if your crown fits you properly, it should last for around 7 years without needing adjustments, without breaking, and without falling out or needing replacement. If you take good care of your teeth and your crown with regular visits to the dentist and twice-daily brushing, your crown can last for decades.
Success may depend on many factors and when you make the judgment.

For many patients success may be determined solely if they like the shade of the crown; however there are many very other factors to consider.

It is important to be aware of the time, care and attention given to you during the crown procedures. You should see the crown prior to cementation and be sure that the bite feels natural and is not too tight against the adjacent teeth. Floss should go through the contact areas similar to other areas where teeth are against one another. Of course, the crown, even a metal crown, should appear natural in the mouth in relation to the other teeth and gums. If all these factors are satisfactory, along with the crown itself fitting well, there is a reasonable chance the crown will have a good prognosis.

There are always possible problems that may occur however. There may be sensitivity, recurrent decay, need for root canal, and porcelain fracture to name a few. These problems may occur at any time in the life of a tooth, whether it has been "crowned" or not. In our office we review all the potential problems that may affect the crown and tooth prior to starting the procedure.

The patient should also be aware that he or she plays a vital part in the long term success of a crown, or any treatment. Assuming that the crown is made well and placed with care, it is essential that the patient brush, floss and clean interproximally, in addition to avoiding certain foods that may cause damage to the crown, tooth and gum area.

If your teeth or stronger and/or the appearance of your teeth has improved, then getting a crown was a success. 

If your dentist recommends a crown, it is probably to correct one of several conditions. Your dentist’s primary concern, like yours, is helping you keep your teeth healthy and your smile bright.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.